Innovations in sustainability for airports, marine, oil and gas

Innovations in sustainability for airports, marine, oil and gas

The aeronautics and marine industries have long been early adopters of new innovations and technologies. Now that sustainability is becoming an increasingly important subject globally, these industries are embracing new innovations in sustainability. With organisations like the International Maritime Organisation making commitments to reduce emissions and greenhouse gasses, new innovations in sustainability are vital. The aeronautics and maritime industries are not the only ones – oil and gas companies are also looking towards these innovations. This blog outlines innovations in sustainability for airports, marine, oil and gas.


  • Airports


Airports consume a vast amount of energy, and reducing this is a key way to become more sustainable. Innovations like LED lighting can drastically reduce the amount of energy an airport needs. Some airports are also looking at alternative ways of generating energy. Dublin Airport is one example, having installed 268 solar panels on the airport’s reservoir system in partnership with Ireland’s largest energy supplier. These panels are capable of generating more than half of the airport’s energy requirements each year. Other airports are also deploying this approach, including Orlando International Airport.


Cutting pollution and emissions is another way that airports can increase their sustainability. Innovations like advanced aircraft technology and low-carbon sustainable fuel help airports to make a more immediate contribution to limiting the aeronautics industry’s emissions. Vancouver International Airport has an initiative to reduce its carbon emissions to net-zero by 2030 by taking advantage of the availability of low-carbon aircraft fuel.


  • The marine industry


Shipping alone accounts for around 2-3% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, so the marine industry is also taking steps to increase its sustainability. One innovative option is decarbonising the industry’s fuel. With most commercial vessels relying on low-cost heavy oil for fuel, adapting to zero-carbon fuels can make a great impact on the health of our oceans. Making the supply chains for zero-carbon fuels more sustainable and demonstrating the viability of these fuels industry-wide can help to achieve the International Maritime Organisation’s mandate to reduce the sulphur levels in ship fuels to 0.5%.


Wind power is another innovation that’s driving the marine industry towards greater sustainability. Research is being conducted to inform the development of innovative technologies that will allow for hybrid vessels. Such solutions could include the use of kite sails above ships, more traditionally designed sails using lighter and more efficient fabrics, as well as Flettner rotors, spinning cylinders mounted onto a ship to provide force.


  • The oil and gas industries


Whilst renewable energy is becoming more widely used, it’s likely that oil and gas will continue to be part of the energy we typically use in the future. This means it’s essential for oil and gas companies to develop more sustainable practices and adopt sustainability innovations. Many companies are seeking to innovate themselves, continuing to work with oil and gas whilst simultaneously exploring ways to transition to low-carbon fuels.


Another way that oil and gas companies can work towards sustainability is by switching to more environmentally-friendly transport and delivery methods. The industry is increasingly turning towards low-mileage and low-emission solutions that help to reduce its overall carbon footprint, as well as operating in an energy-efficient way.